Hold your hoses: City to rein in water use to avoid sprinkler ban.

Last updated 12:46 31/01/2013
water ban
Mark Taylor/Fairax NZ
HOSES ONLY: Restrictions on sprinklers are still in place as the big dry continues.

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Radio and online advertising is being ramped up to saturate Hamilton residents with water conservation messages and avert the threat of harsher restrictions.

Sweltering temperatures and dry winds and have pushed Waipa District Council to Level 3 this week, a total ban on all domestic sprinkler use - only use of a hand held hose is permitted.

City council staff have warned the city may be put at the same alert level for the first time if the public does not get behind a campaign to rein in the city's booming water use.

Waipa District Council staff said the district continued to have high water usage and to ensure continued supply of water a total ban on sprinklers was required as dry conditions worsen.

Waipa also has a restriction on outdoor water use for commercial and non-residential properties.

The Waikato Times revealed this week that Hamilton neighbours are increasingly potting their neighbours for breaching the current restrictions limiting sprinkler use, and the council has received a flurry of questions about complaints through social media.

Huntington residents Wayne and Paula Thorne said cutting the water restrictions back further would kill off their lawn which they have already re-sown ''several'' times due to previous years water restrictions.

''You do your best to keep your lawn looking nice and it costs a lot of money you know, both to have the lawn and maintain it,'' Mr Thorne said.

Mr Thorne said that he took pride in keeping his lawn looking lush and that him and his wife were proud of the compliments they received about their lawn.

''I enjoy the comments we get back because they're all good,'' he said.

Brian Hamill of Huntington said he had installed a $5000 irrigation system to maintain his lawn, which was programmed to turn on and off within the allowed time slots.

He said he believed water restrictions were necessary and that a lot of his neighbours had installed systems like his to ensure their lawns looked their best.

''I believe in playing the game and most people appear to be as far as I can see,'' he said.

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